Rolls-Royce Phantom III Sedanca de Ville by Hooper

In 1935, Rolls-Royce replaced the Phantom II with its first 12-cylinder model, the Phantom III. More compact than the straight-six Phantom II engine, the firewall could be moved forward about eight inches, allowing coachbuilders to create more spacious passenger compartments. The Phantom III chassis was massively overbuilt, providing a strong platform for large bodies. The forward position of the engine allowed for many innovative body designs, though most PIIIs were formal town cars and limousines, not stylish Sedancas.

The PIII was well-received by well-heeled buyers, and the British magazine The Autocar published an extensive road test of it in its October 2, 1936 issue, sub-titled, “Road Travel In Its Most Advanced and Refined Form Provided by the New Twelve-Cylinder Model.”

The new 7,340-cubic centimeter engine was 328 cubic centimeters smaller than the Phantom II, but its output was greater. The powerful 12-cylinder engine was matched with a new suspension, with shock absorbers adjusted by the driver. It delivered comfortable high-speed touring, and it was able to maintain 80 mph for hours.

Part of the RM Auctions event in Arizona in January, 2013.

165 hp, 7,340 cc OHV V-12 engine with dual ignition, separate four-speed manual gearbox, independent front suspension by coil springs, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel servo-operated drum brakes. Wheelbase: 140 in.

Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Jamey Price

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